Chick-fil-A opens on a Sunday for stranded Atlanta airport passengers

Image Passengers wait after the lights went out at Hartfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport Dec. 17 2017 in Atlanta

Chick-fil-A opened on Sunday to feed stranded passengers in Atlanta

Power has since been restored in the Atlanta airport and all flights leaving are scheduled to be on time for departures later today. During those hours in the dark, thousands of travelers waited on planes or in the terminals. Elderly and disabled travelers who can't walk had to be carried up stairs on fellow passengers' backs after deplaning since escalators and elevators were not working. The SkyTrain connecting the airport with an off-site rental auto facility and the underground Plane Train linking concourses were both expected to begin running again around 10 a.m., airport spokesman Reese McCranie said.

Anthony Foxx, who served as USA transportation secretary under former President Barack Obama, blasted airport officials, saying the problem was "compounded by confusion and poor communication".

In another tweet, Foxx said it seemed like the problem was "compounded by confusion and poor communication". The cause of the fire has yet to be determined, but nothing suggests it was set deliberately, he said.

Around noon Monday, stranded travelers who couldn't find chairs sat on the floor, charging their cellphones at the electrical outlets.

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Juan Rivera, 46, arrived in Atlanta on Sunday on his way from Huntsville, Alabama, to Newark, New Jersey.

Every airport will have redundancy, "but in nearly every case there's some point in your solution where you've got a single point of failure", he said.

In a news conference Sunday evening, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed apologized to the thousands of passengers left stranded by the outage.

The airline has already canceled roughly 400 flights on Monday. Despite the 10 hours ahead of him at the airport, he had a smile on his face.

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Cybersecurity officials with the Department of Homeland Security said Monday that they also do not think the outage was the result of "an attack or other nefarious act". "This is nothing compared to what's happening over there". He was still hoping to reach his home in Richmond, Virginia, the following day.

Other airlines also canceled flights for the rest of Sunday.

In that period of time, however, major disruptions occurred.

Georgia Power said a fire in an underground electrical facility caused a sudden power outage around 1 p.m. Sunday. American Airlines canceled around 50 but said it was back on a normal schedule by late morning. United Airlines and JetBlue Airways were among carriers reporting delays or cancellations.

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